The pleasure of returning to material after a weeks break and the freshness that’s afforded by having some space from your initial ideas. The ability to find solutions to problems that eluded you, or were wearing previously. I noticed this was partly to do with the fact that I felt less faithful to the original material and able to change things slightly in order to make them function more easily. I’ve also been noticing my tendency or ability to carry on when I make mistakes, happy in sketching things out. The danger in not being a perfectionist is that I might never spend the time on clarifying sticky moments, making do with fudging through. This is particularly present for me in the transitions between chunks of material, how one phrase leads into another, and the sense that my attention ‘drops out’ as I finish something and start another. How do you stay present between the end and the beginning?
I noticed there is a parallel in my idea of flocking with the sense that as an open improvised idea becomes clearer you circle in on its essential nature.
The idea of whats visible has been finding its way into the groups conversations. I’ve been thinking about the relationship between your idea, how something feels to do from the inside and what is visible from the outside and whether these things necessarily correlate. This morning Jennifer asked ‘what wants to be seen?’ as if the material or the work itself already has an essential nature, the process being a way of making the work visible. The conversation meandered onto the satisfaction of symmetry, unison and moments where things come together. This made me think about the fact that you register change, and when things stop changing we stop seeing them. On an improvisation workshop I remember the teacher saying that ‘staying with’ something built meaning while ‘changing’ created surprise and freed you up, and that improvising was a constant balancing between these two things. This made me think of two reflections from BodyStories by Andrea Olsen:
“Often when I am teaching a dance class, I will see a student in perfect balance. It is a beautiful thing- calm, simple, direct. And then they will recognise the moment and move slightly off centre. Balance through the bones produces minimal feedback in the nervous system. It is a curious state of non sensation. They move to feel themselves struggling, working, trying. And then they fall and look at me with frustration and say I can’t balance.”
The other is:
“In relationships, when something is quite balanced- nothing is happening- I get nervous.”